Summary: This is a sermon that encourages the hearers to commit their plans to God. Could be used for a baccalaureate message.
“COMMIT YOUR PLANS TO GOD” Prov. 16:3
INTRO – Army – “Be all that you can be.” Boy Scouts – “Be Prepared.” Someone once said – “Wherever you are, be all there.” Another person once said, “Be alert. We need more lerts.” I think I’ve heard Ken Bailey say, “If I weren’t an LSU Tiger, I’d be ashamed.” Ask little kids, “What are you going to be when you grow up?” Poster w/ cute little child on it said, “Be patient, G’s not finished with me yet.”
Today, I want to share w/ you some “Be-attitudes.” Not the Beatitudes that Jesus gave in Matthew 5, though those are some of the most awesome words He shared. No, I’d like to give you some practical encouragement from the wisdom book of the Bible on how to be what God intends for you to be. If you are going to commit your plans to the Lord, you need to BE these things:
I. BE READY FOR ANYTHING.
A. Headlines right now – Pres. Bush and gov’t. leaders were warned about a possible terrorist attack. Many of their opponents accusing Bush of not doing anything to get ready for a potential attack.
B. Life is going to throw you some curveballs and you need to do your best to be ready.
i. Terrorists will attack.
ii. Someone you love will be diagnosed w/ cancer.
iii. You will fail a test or major paper, or not get that job that you were so sure you were going to get.
iv. Death is going to unexpectedly invade your life at some point.
C. Not trying to be a prophet of gloom and doom, but these are just simple realities of life. And while we can’t prepare for every specific event that might come our way – don’t have a crystal ball to see into the future – we can be ready for them when they come.
i. This past Thursday, the Rouse Polymerics plant in Vicksburg exploded in violent ball of flames. The 18 men who were working at that time didn’t go to work that afternoon knowing that it was going to explode into a ball of flames. But that is the way life is. You can’t be prepared for every specific situation that comes your way, but you can be ready when they come.
ii. How? Max Lucado summed it up for us when he said, “Funerals, divorces, illnesses, and stays in the hospital – you can’t lie about life at such times. Maybe that’s why Jesus is always present at such time.” (God Came Near – p. 54)
D. Did you hear that last statement? There’s the Key (w/ a capital “K”) to being ready for anything that life brings your way.
i. You can be ready for anything in life – good or bad – if Jesus is in control of your life.
ii. If He is in control:
1. You can be knocked down but not out.
2. You can be unhappy about your circumstances but still have joy in your heart.
3. You can grieve over your present loss but not lose hope for the future.
E. Jesus said in Matthew 28:20, “Be sure of this – that I am with you always, even to the end of the world.” (TLB)
i. Bible also says, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Ro. 8:31)
ii. “When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be w/ you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up – the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, your Savior, the Holy One of Israel.” (Isa. 43:2-3 TLB)
F. You can be ready for anything if you have Jesus. Look around you. Right here in this room today are scores of people who can give testimony to the absolute truth of this.
i. They have lost loved ones to death, some in very tragic circumstances. They have unexpectedly lost jobs. They have had children who have rebelled against them in terrible ways. They have had lifelong friends turn against them in unimaginable hurtful ways. They have had spouses be unfaithful to them and walk out of their lives. They have faced sickness and disease in their own lives and have been wracked w/ physical pain.
ii. And if you asked them about these times in their lives, they would answer you by saying, “These things were not pleasant. They were not fun. I had my feet knocked out from under me and at times, thought there would be no end to the pain that I felt. But if I didn’t have Jesus, I would have never made it through.”